November 1999

Hello, fellow SCAN members,

Our October outing took us across the state line into North Carolina by a few miles, into Union County near Waxhaw and the Nature Conservancy property, Mineral Springs Preserve. This preserve protects one of the few remaining eastern prairie remnants; like other eastern prairie-like sites, this one contains a population of federally endangered Schweinitz’s sunflower plus several species of ‘special concern’. The botanists in the group of 15 who attended had a true ‘field day’.Their appreciation was enhanced by our leader for the day, Catherine McRae, who is a graduate student at UNC-Charlotte using this site for her study area for her degree in plant ecology. Thank you, Catherine, for taking your day to enhance our appreciation of such a site. Unfortunately, our regional director, Don Seriff was unable to attend; thank you, Don, for finding such an interesting site and providing such a knowledgeable and helpful guide. The day started very chilly, but the plants weren’t affected. By afternoon the temperature warmed and so did the insects. Asters in full bloom covered much of the open area of the prairie, so butterflies became very active. It turns out we found a couple of county records for Union County. To those of you who couldn’t attend, may I say you missed a good one?

Lynn B. Smith

Secretary’s Note: The flora-fauna list from the Mineral Springs Preserve does not have any lichens and very few beetles. This does not reflect on the diversity of the site but rather that our experts in these items, Jan and Alex Ciegler, were not on the trip but traveling in Australia

Annual Meeting: This year’s annual meeting is scheduled for January 22 at the State Museum. As usual, we are planning a slide show and presentation of exhibits. Please transmit any slides that you have from 1999 SCAN field trips or other trips that would be of interest to the membership to Lynn Smith. Any display of material that is of interest to the membership is welcome. With a two month lead time we will hopefully have some very interesting displays.

Annual dues: Dues are due on or before the annual meeting. These are $12 for individuals and $17 for two individuals at the same address. It is $5 for each additional individual at the same address.



10:30 AM

Our November trip will take us again to the picturesque foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains near Lake Keowee. As fall slips into winter we will be able to see these seasonal changes at Keowee-Toxaway State Park. Keowee-Toxaway (Keowee meaning “land of the Mulberry Groves” and Toxaway meaning “land of no tomahawks”) is located in the midst of former Cherokee Indian country. There is an Interpretive Center and a quarter mile trail featuring four outdoor exhibit kiosks which display the history of the Cherokee Indians. Two additional trails provide exploration of diverse mountainous habitats with abundant plants, wildlife, impressive rock outcrops, and mountain springs. The Raven Rock Hiking Trail is the longer of the two and winds through oak/hickory forests to a point overlooking Lake Keowee . The shorter trail, Natural Bridge Nature Trail is a one and one-half mile loop off the Raven Rock Trail. It is less strenuous and leads to a beautiful creek. Depending upon fortitude and sense of adventure SCAN members are free to choose the trail which interests them.

Cabins and campsites (both RV and tent) are available for those interested. For more information on camping call the park office at (864) 868-2605.

DETAILS: We will meet at the Interpretive Center/Museum Parking Lot at 10:30 and will explore the Interpretive Trail followed by a visit to the museum. Around 12:00 Noon we will have our lunch at one of the picnic sites near the museum. After lunch we will travel across the road to the Meeting House and explore the nature trails. Bring lunch as usual, wear comfortable walking/hiking shoes, and have insect repellent just in case. You may need water depending on which trail you choose. Restroom facilities are located in the park at the Interpretive Center.

DIRECTIONS: The entrance to the park is located on Highway 11 in Pickens County. From Pickens take Hwy 178 North and travel approximately 15 miles to the junction of Hwy 11. Turn left at the intersection of Hwy. 11 and 178. Travel west on Hwy 11 for approximately 6-9 miles. Shortly after the junction of Hwy 133 on Hwy 11 you will see the entrance to the park on the left. Follow the signs to the Interpretive Museum and park here.